Low estrogen may indicate lung cancer risk

July 24, 2009 2:46:59 PM PDT
Medically induced menopause that involves removing both ovaries nearly doubles a younger woman's risk of developing lung cancer. Researchers reporting in the International Journal of Cancer say it's possible that vulnerability to lung cancer is caused by early and sudden decrease in estrogen levels or potentially long-term use of hormone replacement therapy.

Scientists say a major strength of this study was detailed smoking information which they received from the almost 1,000 study participants. they say this is important because of the role of smoking in lung cancer and because smokers generally have lower estrogen levels than non-smokers.